Bristol University gets record £10m gift for new campus

Hugh Sloane (left) and Professor Hugh Brady Image copyright University of Bristol
Image caption Hugh Sloane (left) has put "trust and faith" in vision of vice chancellor Professor Hugh Brady

The University of Bristol has received a record £10m gift from a former student to help it build a new campus in the city centre.

Hugh Sloane's donation will go towards the £300m regeneration of derelict land next to Temple Meads station.

The economic and politics graduate said the campus would "attract the best and brightest from around the world".

Vice chancellor Professor Hugh Brady said the project was a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity".

Mr Sloane graduated from Bristol in 1977 and went on to co-found the charitable Sloane Robinson Foundation for education with business partner George Robinson.

'Due diligence'

Mr Sloane and Mr Robinson were ordered to pay back millions of pounds in tax in 2012 following a tribunal ruling against a tax avoidance scheme.

The donation by Mr Sloane and his foundation, for the Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus (TQEC), is the largest philanthropic gift the university has ever received.

A spokesman for the university said: "The university undertakes a thorough due diligence process on all major donations and is delighted to accept this support from Hugh Sloane and the Sloane Robinson Foundation."

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Media captionThe new campus will be near Temple Meads station

"This is one of the few times in the last 50 years where an opportunity has arisen to build a new campus right in the heart of a UK city," he added.

"I think people will be amazed when they visit the city by train and see this world-class academic centre across the platform."

The TQEC will sit on the site of a former Royal Mail sorting office at Cattle Market Road, which has been derelict since 1997 and was described as "dragging Bristol down" by mayor Marvin Rees.

The campus will house a "digital innovation hub", a "business school of the future" and student residential village.

Prof Brady said: "We have been given a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to re-imagine the future of our university as one of the world's great civic universities while also transforming a key site at the heart of our city.

"Hugh Sloane has put his trust and faith in our vision which makes us ever more determined to make this venture a great success."

It is hoped the campus will open in time for the start of the 2021/22 academic year.

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